MILAN -- Italian automaker Fiat is suffering serious economic damage from a strike by truck drivers that has blocked shipments of new cars out of its factories for the last three weeks, it said on Thursday.
Fiat said in a statement it was now using all its available storage capacity.
The company has had to stop production at its largest car factories as the huge car parks outside the plants are packed with gleaming cars waiting to be delivered to dealers.
"Since April 26, labor unrest in the two-tier carrier sector has blocked shipments of new cars with serious economic damages to the company and heavy inconvenience to the dealer network and customers," Fiat said.
The company said that some of its plants around Italy would continue to be affected on Friday.
A spokesman at Fiat said the strike, which is not specifically aimed at Fiat, would affect its plants at Mirafiori, Melfi and Cassino. Its plant at Iveco di Suzzara will work under reduced capacity, he added.
Last week, Fiat Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne said the strike had cost 350,000 euros ($450,000) so far as the company scrambled to move cars by rail and sea.
It gave no update on the extent of the financial hit on Thursday but newspapers reported the cost was now more than 1 million euros -- the last thing Fiat needs as it battles to pull its core car unit back toward profit, mostly by cutting costs.
Fiat said it could take legal action over the strike.
Truck drivers have been striking against car transporter companies since April 26. The drivers and companies have been meeting at the Transport Ministry to try to resolve the dispute.